It is a common sight in church to see people diligently attending the Sunday worship service, praying, giving tithe and offering, and even actively serving in a ministry or ministries. Do all these please God? Yes, if all these are carried out with the right motive in the heart and with God as the main focus, rather than carried out as empty formalities or mere religious rituals.
In Micah 6:6-7, Micah condemns the empty formalities observed by the Israelites. The Israelites carried out their religious activities just to appease God from His anger at their wicked ways. They had followed the kind of thinking the Gentiles had with regard to their worshipping of their idols. The Israelites asked whether the LORD wanted burnt offerings, rivers of oil, or their firstborn children as a sacrifice for the sins they had committed against Him. In other words, they carried out their religious activities just to appease God from His anger. Instead of repenting of their wicked ways, the Israelites tried to appease God by bribing Him with their pretentious religious rituals. God, through His prophet, Micah, reminded them of what He required:
“He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8)
What God wants from His people is their total obedience to Him. As they obey Him in their daily lives, they will begin to love others more, which will manifest itself in justice, kindness and humility.
Our faith in God should be manifested in the way we treat our fellow humans. We are to be just, kind and humble before the Lord. Some people do good to others without knowing the One True God but we Christians cannot say we know the One True God but yet as a matter of fact, do not do good to, and love and care for others.
To do good, to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with our God are what God calls us to do. Will you respond to His call?
“And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep the commandments and statutes of the LORD, which I am commanding you today for your good?” (Deuteronomy 10:12-13)
The Lord requires much more from us
Than just an outer show;
True love for Him will give itself
To people here below. -- K. De Haan